We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Saturday, September 3. 2011
Scott at Powerline asks "Where have all the grown-ups gone?" Diana West has a new book, coming out soon: The Death of the Grown-Up: How America's Arrested Development is Bringing Down Western Civilization.
It's a subject that has been on my mind for quite a while - the phenomenon of perpetual psychological adolescence in us decadent and pampered Americans - so I will look forward to seeing what she has to say about it.
I hope she will mention that the post-war worship of youth, which culminated in the late 60s and 70s, provided social permission, if not incentive, for adults to continue behaving like kids. Even college, once the domain of the serious, has become an extension of high-school. Given the human temptation for regression, and the joys of youth when compared with the rigors, duties, sacrifices, and responsibilities of adulthood, it's no wonder that people welcome the socio-cultural invitation. Every psychiatrist and psychoanalyst in America, and probably in Europe, is well-aware of this. And so are our politicians, who feed into it - and feed on it: Take care of me, Mommy and Daddy Government.
Photo: These mill workers in Georgia around the turn of the century were probably more mature than some of the 40 year-olds I see these days. Yes, I am in favor of children working. All of mine did. I did, too - and it was not "fun." However, I had time to work on my tennis too.
We play with our kids too much
A piece in the Boston Globe makes the case that Americans play with their kids too much. I wonder whether this fits, a bit, with my piece yesterday on The Death of the Grown-Up.It's worth thinking about, but I do not regret one minute of playing Chutes an
Weblog: Maggie's Farm
Tracked: Jul 23, 13:10
The Hippie Fad
"Imagine all the people living for today..." Fortunately, the Beatles didn't live that way. If they had, we would not have their music.Yes, it's the 40th Anniversary of the San Francisco "Summer of Love." Regarding our post about Cinna
Weblog: Maggie's Farm
Tracked: Jul 26, 08:53
Weds. Morning Links
I have always been a big booster of Lebanon and the Labanese on these pages. It used to be a fun place, and could be again. Twisted logic on illegal immigration, via Wizbang. How does that make sense?Want to interrupt your morning serenity with a nice ang
Weblog: Maggie's Farm
Tracked: Aug 22, 07:02
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Having not read the book I obviously cannot comment on it's specific content. That is no bar to addressing the question.
The reviews cited on Amazon are from big names, and all resonate with truth.
I have said several things before that I believe now to be our destiny. First, we are soft and ready to be taken over, having rotted internally as all great nations eventually do.
Secondly their are those of us who will physically fight, with guns, bombs, and every other means to detard an external takeover and then to reeducate those citizen who have orchestrated this meretricious society of metrosexuals and those that are within the same orbit.
There are naturally those who would easily question how much hutzspah it takes to make a statement such as, "and then to reeducate those citizen who have orchestrated this meretricious society of metrosexuals and those that are within the same orbit."
But that is rapidly becoming only an academic question, for there will be those of us who will enforce our vision of what our society should look like and let the academics argue the finer points of continued multiculturlaism and the relative nature of what form a society should take.
It will be Spencerian, and the ill prepared, the weak, the counter-culturalists will all come to a new understanding of the hardships of life.
In the 5-7th grades daugther was required to come directly from school (Walk) to my office. From 3:30PM until 4:00PM she shared in the family business. Her chores were the trash cans, arranging brochures, dusting, welcoming clients when staff were already occupied, she also made bank deposits. Here is the irony. My staff loved the new little Chinese family that had moved in down the street. That family had three generations, including children the same age as my daughter, working in their little grocery store every day. My staff thought it was so wonderful how the new immigrants worked so hard together. However, they thought it was terrible that I required my daughter to come and work in the office every day. Staff never could explain the difference to me--but, then they were all very liberal. Today, my daughter is a very successful, hard working, kind and thoughtful owner of her own professional service firm. WAY TO GO GIRL--proud of you!
Not grown up actions. H/t Am. Thinker
Saluting the White Flag
By Bob Weir
From the time we're in grammar school, all the way through our adult lives we've been taught to take responsibility for our actions and not place blame on others for something we did. It's one of the essential elements of integrity. There was a time in our history when we could at least hope to look up to our elected officials and view them as statesmen, because they represented character traits we admired. Those traits and the courage to take a stand against evil would make us proud to follow them into battle. But today, we see many of them behaving like duplicitous children, pointing fingers at classmates and lying to the teacher about who threw the spitball. One of the most obnoxious traits is the willingness to conveniently forget what they supported in the past in order to gain political advantage in the present.
In 1998, Secretary of State, Madeline Albright said:
"Iraq is a long way from here, but what happens there matters a great deal here. For, the risk that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face and it is a threat against which we must and will stand firm."
President Clinton said action must be taken to stop the Iraqi dictator or,
"do we take some ambiguous route to give Saddam more opportunities to develop this program of weapons of mass destruction and continue to ignore the solemn commitments that he made?"
That same year, former Vermont Governor and current leader of the DNC, Howard Dean said:
"There are such things as international outlaws. I'm not sure China is, but I'm quite sure Iran and Iraq are."
Sandy Berger, the National Security Advisor under Clinton said, speaking of Saddam Hussein:
"Someday, he will surely rebuild his arsenal of weapons of mass destruction and I‘m certain he will use them as he has before."
California Democrat Congresswoman, and current Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi said in 2002:
"Saddam Hussein certainly has chemical and biological weapons. There's no question about that."
West Virginia Democrat Senator Jay Rockefeller said:
"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons."
Delaware Democrat Senator Joe Biden said:
"We know he continues to attempt to gain access to additional capability, including nuclear capability."
Nevada Democrat Senator, Harry Reid said:
"Saddam Hussein has, in effect, thumbed his nose at the world community and I think the president (Bush) is approaching this in the right fashion."
That same year on Meet the Press, New York Democrat Senator, Hillary Clinton was asked by host Tim Russert:
"Do you think we could have disarmament (in Iraq) without regime change?"
"I doubt it! I can support the president (Bush), I can support an action (war) against Saddam Hussein because I think it's in the long term interests of our national security."
Former North Carolina Senator and current presidential candidate, Democrat, John Edwards said on MSNBC in 2003:
"Serving on the Intelligence Committee and seeing day after day and week after week the briefings on Saddam's weapons of mass destruction and his plans on using those weapons; he can not be allowed to have those weapons. It‘s just that simple!"
Indiana Senator, Democrat Evan Bayh said on The O'Reilly Factor in 2003:
"Bill, I support the president's efforts to disarm Saddam Hussein. I think he (Bush) was right on in the speech he gave. The lessons we learned following September 11 were that we can't wait to be attacked again. Saddam has not done the right thing, so we're left with no alternative but to take action."
All of the above (and much more) was said by Democrats who voted to give President Bush the authority to invade Iraq. However, like irresponsible adolescents, they invent excuses for their behavior and look for a scapegoat.
President Bush said:
"When I made the decision to remove Saddam Hussein from power, Congress approved it with strong, bi-partisan support. While it's perfectly legitimate to criticize my decision or the conduct of the war, it is deeply irresponsible to rewrite the history of how that war began. As our troops fight a ruthless enemy, determined to destroy our way of life, they deserve to know that their elected leaders who voted to send them to war, continue to stand behind them."
Sadly, the only thing those Democrats would stand behind is a white flag. With a worldwide terrorist organization plotting our demise, electing one of those poltroons as Commander in Chief could literally become a fatal mistake
What's so discouraging is that the 2006 election showed clearly that the voters don't seem to see much wrong with the Dem's huge self-serving backstabbing flip-flop on the war.
I think they see it. I know I present a harsh assessment of our immediate future ( next 20 years or sooner) but I am in good intellectual company.
I think from the mid 1960's through the Carter Administration the effects of the "Me Generation", the Baby Boomers was far more corrosive to the fabric of our society than many on the right initially realized. We basically had a cultural revolution and it's still eroding what remains of what America was before 1963 or so.
We have every toy imaginable, and an entire generation (as the entire thread points out) that never grew up....instead of parenting they wanted to be their child's "best friend". Instead of saving for the rainy day they saved nothing, or next to nothing, instead piling up personal debt that is crushing.
Virtues..a word in no way attached to the Boomer Generation which managed to shield their progeny from anything approaching respect or honor..
No, they know, they just think it takes no sacrifice to remain free and freedom is always defended and measured in blood, always. That is a sacrifice they refuse to make.
"Even college, once the domain of the serious, has become an extension of high-school."
You said it, and I can vouch for it. I'll keep my eye out for West's book.
Here's another you might like: Lee Harris, "The Suicide of Reason":
I'm no longer a huge fan of Newt Gingrich, but he had some really good things to say about our lost generations of 30 year old American children:
"...The solution is dramatic and unavoidable: We have to end adolescence as a social experiment. We tried it. It failed. It's time to move on. Returning to an earlier, more successful model of children rapidly assuming the roles and responsibilities of adults would yield enormous benefit to society.
Prior to the 19th century, it's fair to say that adolescence did not exist. Instead, there was virtually universal acceptance that puberty marked the transition from childhood to young adulthood. Whether with the Bar Mitzvah and Bat Mitzvah ceremony of the Jewish faith or confirmation in the Catholic Church or any hundreds of rites of passage in societies around the planet, it was understood you were either a child or a young adult.
In the U.S., this principle of direct transition from the world of childhood play to the world of adult work was clearly established at the time of the Revolutionary War. Benjamin Franklin was an example of this kind of young adulthood. At age 13, Franklin finished school in Boston, was apprenticed to his brother, a printer and publisher, and moved immediately into adulthood.
John Quincy Adams attended Leiden University in Holland at 13 and at 14 was employed as secretary and interpreter by the American Ambassador to Russia. At 16 he was secretary to the U.S. delegation during the negotiations with Britain that ended the Revolution.
Daniel Boone got his first rifle at 12, was an expert hunter at 13, and at 15 made a yearlong trek through the wilderness to begin his career as America's most famous explorer. The list goes on and on...."
Thanks for the great website. It's my first stop every day....
God Bless All
Giving women the vote was the mistake, as to mommy and daddy government.
The 60% of women who vote like men ought to campaign to repeal women's suffrage just for that reason.
rhhardin ... You seem to be confused here.
"Giving women the vote was the mistake..." I don't understand what you are trying to say. What does women having the vote have to do with Americans, both men and women, ending adolescence as 'a social experiment?' There are just as many childish men as there are childish women, extending their childhoods. If you are trying to say that men and women who vote alike think alike on voting issues, I fail to see what's wrong with that also. It's not a crime for women to share the same political beliefs as their male family members. Sometimes we do, sometimes we don't. And as long as we have a secret ballot, you won't know for sure if we do.
Women having the voting franchise, which took us 100 years to accomplish, by the way, is a good thing for America. It's part of what makes us unique. Certainly, some women would rather not have it. But if we didn't, we women wouldn't have any 'skin in the game,' so to speak, and we would be less equal and less effective than we are. In societies around the world, where women do not have the voting franchise, many of them are treated like chattels or possessions, not free-thinking equals of the men in their countries.
Your suggestion that "60% of women who vote like men ought to campaign to repeal women's suffrage" is just flat-out silly. Are you blaming women for the people of both sexes in our society who remain perpetual adolescents? Sounds as if you are.
Years ago, I read a very interesting book on the rise and fall of civilizations. One of the common elements in the book was the "equalization" of women and men. The author made the argument that in granting women the same priviledges as men, as in the right to vote, own property, etc., led to the downfall of that civilization and that civilizations which did not follow this path would succeed. Now his point wasn't the women should not be allowed to vote, own property, but when the sexes are equal in terms of rights, civilization fails due to the disparate nature of the two sexes and how they view the world as those views are completely different. His larger point was that one should be dominant and the other subservient in order for any civilization to be truly successful over the long term.
One of his more fanciful predictions would be that eventually, the male of the species would become useless as males became more like women in how they viewed the world and become useless appendages - that basically, given the appropriate technology (which, by the way we are fast approaching) women can self replicate thus making men an evolutionary dead end.
I'm not so sure he isn't right. :>)
Woman's suffrage was the mark of decline in the American way. The vote is a voice, the same as speaking out on issues. There is a marked difference in the fundamental way a man thinks and acts vs. that of a woman. If you imagine a group of 10 men working a task there will be a natural leader most others will support and go along with the idea of the leader(s) a few may not agree but will not speak out due to their minority status and the responsibility of being a man, being part of the group. The job gets done the way it was planned. Introduce two women to the group and now you have the same leaders having to adjust to the plan to accommodate the women. The dynamics of the group change to say the least. The men that may have disagreed before now have a chance to sway the majority they get in touch with their feminine side and vote for a change in plan, they may even appear as thoughtful, caring and protective. In fact they are protecting themselves from the hard task of being masculine. The task now does not get done with the same intent or expedience. For better or worse a homogenous group perform as one. The military or Police is a simple example. I cannot imagine women being in combat, a bad idea. The woman's right's movement destroyed the concept of being a woman and created the desire for women to become demi-men. The woman's right's movement did this by demeaning the traditional role of a woman as a homemaker, that role became suddenly beneath the modern woman. Some men accepted this idea of women acting the same as men. This allows these men to retreat to abdicate their male responsibilities as Fathers as leaders, as being responsible mature adults. The nuclear family is the core of modern civilization without it and it's inherent hierarchy there will be decay and chaos.
Now at this point the writer typically would make (in the current age and atmosphere) his 'disclaimer" I will not.
Now, now Tom... Most women who have any 'smarts' at all know that having equal rights and opportunities with men doesn't mean that we are equivalent. Wise women love the fact that men and women aren't *duplicates*, but rather *complements*.
My husband and I have been watching football this afternoon. He understands football. I don't. But I enjoy the sight of these nice handsome boys in spandex pants running back and forth on the field, working off their excess aggressions without really hurting each other. And making an excellent living doing it. I don't want to make my living doing that. I couldn't. But I'm glad they can. And I'm glad that I can do some things excellently well that they probably can't.
We're not supposed to duplicate each other, and feminists get in trouble when they think we are supposed to. Instead, in a perfect world, we're supposed to fit together like puzzle pieces.
It's more fun that way.
RH, I take you to be saying that women vote in larger numbers for Nanny-state policies than men do. I don't have any hard figures on that, but I've read things to make me believe you're reporting a genuine trend. I'd call it an unfortunate consequence of treating women like children and letting them get away with acting that way. As a cure, rather than take the vote away from women, I'd go back to means of tying the vote to real adulthood, not just age. Might as well cull out the childish men at the same time. I wonder anyone who survives (or whose dependents survive) on public assistance ought not to lose the franchise at least temporarily.
Texan99 ... My comments here are not meant as criticism, but rather as simple curiosity.
As you know, in America's early days as a republic, the voting franchise was tied to land ownership, since those who owned land, and produced the country's wealth, were assumed to be responsible adults who would pay their bills, keep their property in good shape, and pay their necessary taxes. Are you planning, in your particular Utopia, to go back to this particular selective test? Property ownership? Or maybe local government participation?
I also question your comment about treating women like children and letting them get away with acting that way. You obviously know a whole different group of women than I do. You sign yourself 'Texan99.' The great majority of Texas women I know act like responsible adults. Of course, we do have a porous border on our southern edge. And all kinds of non-Americans filter in and out as a result, many of whom do not share our standards. But Texan women as a whole, whether they are rich or not, act as adults if they are adults. Your facts may differ from mine, of course. But I think it's unrealistic to blame women for a societal trend that affects both sexes.
Marianne, I'm a Texas woman, and the women I hang around with are probably very much like the ones you hang around with. (I follow your posts and hold you in the highest possible regard.) The last thing I'd claim is that women in general are inherently irresponsible or undeserving of the vote. But I do wonder what to make of gender-based voting trends, sometimes. There certainly is a subculture among women -- not all women, not necessarily even a majority, but enough to concern me -- that seems strongly inclined to vote for Nanny-state policies rather more than men do on average. I think that our culture is somewhat paternalistic and that women are at least permitted, if not encouraged, to remain childish into adulthood, more than men are. (To the extent that the society is tending more and more to let men get away with it, too, well, that's just more movement in the wrong direction.) I'm very pleased that many women buck this trend, but I still abhor the trend.
Anyway, my thought experiment was not to remove the vote from women (that was Hardin's idea) but to find a way to tie the franchise to a voter's willingness to support himself or herself without help from the government. It has occurred to me often to wonder whether the old rule tying the franchise to land ownership was a good idea. On balance, I distrust that scheme. But I'm open to the idea that you shouldn't be deciding public policy during any time in your life when you're on the public dole. At least it would help curb the power of a large number of non-taxpaying voters to force a small number of taxpayers to support them.
I even wonder whether noncustodial parents who are in default of their child support obligations ought not to lose the franchise until they get back on top of their duties.
Probably none of these ideas are really good. Once you start restricting the franchise, it so easily turns into a tool to undermine democracy and full citizen participation. I used to be active in homeowner association disputes, and every scheme I saw to limit the franchise (for instance, to prohibit a resident from voting if he was in default of dues or a penalty) was abused far more often than not. Apparently it's very risky to give a government an incentive to place an unruly voter in a disenfranchised position.
What's wrong with returning the vote to land ownership? Gee we let deadbeats help decide how to use everyone else's money and wonder why America is broke.
Have you ever heard of anyone voting away government handouts? Especially those on welfare.
Yes, return the vote to property ownership. Yes, return the vote to those who are willing to show that they are citizens of their state and not some illegal using a fake id or democrats voting several times.